Makhanda water outage stretches to four days

Municipality calls for prayers for rain, while others pray for more from their municipality

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Photo of a man collecting water

Makhanda residents taps have been dry all week. They have resorted to collecting water at a spring. Photo: Loyiso Dyongman

Makhanda residents woke up on Monday morning to empty taps. On Thursday, water had still not been restored.

Makana Municipality spokesperson Anele Mjekula said the outage was due to a faulty valve at a water treatment plant on Sunday. The municipality was trying to get specialised tools to fix the problem.

Lulamile Klaas, from e-Nkanini, said if they had received notice from the municipality of the stoppage, residents would have able to prepare by storing water.

Residents say they have had to resort to buying water from people with vehicles who can collect it at Fairview Spring outside the city centre.

“Some people who have water are selling it … 20-litres for R50 and two-litres for R20,” said Azaxole Ntondo, who lives in Extension 9.

But Ntolo struck lucky. “I was helped by Zimbabwean guys who had lots of fresh water from the Fairview spring,” he said. “God bless those guys who had faith and gave me the two 20-litres for free.”

Mkhuseli Mgwebi said he fetches water at the Fairview Spring late afternoon every day after work. “There’s nothing else we can do. I have to pay R50 every day to the transport owner. We have to cook, bath and do many other things. Water is life, and you can’t survive without it.”

Mjekula said low water levels in the dams and reservoirs had contributed to the problem. The municipality now is to transfer water from Bothas Hill to Waainek water treatment plant.

“What aggravates the situation is the fact that Waainek Water Treatment Work is currently operating at 30% due to low dam levels,” he said.

“The natural effects of rainfall patterns on the Western side remain a serious setback. Please continue to pray with us for more and heavier rainfall. Let us continue with the joint responsibility of using the little available water sparingly and equitable,” said Mjekula.

TOPICS:  Water

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